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Hamlin not fully taking part at OTA

Bills safety Damar Hamlin is not a full participant in OTAs at this point as he continues to recover from the cardiac incident in January.

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. — The Bills and Damar Hamlin are taking a cautious approach as the team hits the next phase of the offseason workout program.

Sean McDermott confirmed Tuesday morning that Hamlin is not working fully with the team on the field as the Bills begin the organized team activity phase of the offseason program. 

Hamlin was on the field without a helmet, taking part in some individual drills, but not a full participant in the workouts. 

"He has not been practicing. We're going to just continue to take it one day at a time. We're going to continue to support Damar in every way possible."

Hamlin suffered cardiac arrest January 2 during the first quarter of the Bills game with the Bengals in Cincinnati.  His recovery has been described as remarkable, and has been cleared by specialists to resume football activities. 

"I'm not going to get into specifics.. where he is and what hour but he's in the building and we'll take it one day at a time."

McDermott wouldn't specify whether Hamlin is behind or ahead of whatever schedule there may be for him, other than to reiterate the "one day at a time" approach they're taking. 


  • McDermott says there are operational changes in terms of how practice is run based on the fact that he's calling the defense this year in addition to his responsibilities as head coach.  

    "You know from time to time through practice, I'm in a different position than I was before because I need to be there. So again, having that staff around me. Different people taking my role."

  • McDermott confirms that rookie linebacker Dorian Williams (Bills third round pick) is working in the competition at middle linebacker at this point.  The Bills are looking for a starter to emerge to replace Tremaine Edmunds who left for the Chicago Bears in free agency. 
  • Receiver Stefon Diggs is not taking part in workouts at this point, which are voluntary.  The Bills have a mandatory minicamp in the middle of June. 
  • McDermott says in order for quarterback Josh Allen to take his game to a new level, he has to play smarter and do a better job of protecting himself. McDermott says he sees a new level of "focus and determination" from Allen. 
  • Bills OTA Schedule:  May 22-23, May 25, May 30-June 1, June 5-6, June 8. Mandatory Minicamp: June 13-15. Training Camp TBA. 

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